Getting in touch with nature

New York is the “city of cities”. Skyscrapers, buildings and a fast pace characterize it. However, it also offers spaces to go back to nature. Aside from its many parks, there is one place where you can truly unplug from the metropolis and get into the wild: The Bronx Zoo.

For some people, this may mean a very long subway ride. But if you are a nature and animal enthusiast like me, believe me, it is worth it. As soon as you step into this magnificent zoo (the larges urban zoo in the world), you will find yourself immersed in nature. The small trails -and slightly larger roads- will lead you to waterfalls, tall trees and, of course, all sorts of animals.

The layout of the zoo is divided into ecosystems and continents: Asia, Africa, rainforest, and so on. Based on what animals you wish to see (of the more than 600 species in it), you can plan your whole day. The spaces where the animals live are wide, and give you a great sense of what their natural habitats would be like. They also give you a comforting feeling that the animals are being well taken care of.

My highlights of the day trip were watching the tiger cubs and entering the Congo Gorilla Forest. In the latter, you are led through waterfalls, huge trees and hanging branches to see these amazing creatures up close. The experience is beyond comparison.

There are many interactive activities in this zoo, for kids and adults. There is a children’s zoo, where you can feed goats, a train that offers a safari-like experience, camel rides, animal feedings… the list goes on.

For directions, hours and exhibits, go to the Bronx Zoo website.